The road itself has many features that are worth mentioning, these technologies used have been updated and modernized over time.
A good example of this occurs in Chapiquiña, a town where the walls that make up the Qhapaq Ñan route are made of adobe, which is a material that came to those areas from the Spanish conquest
At the moment of reaching esplanades or wide open roads along its route, the Qhapaq Ñan was enlarged in order to take advantage of all the space that it could, but when valleys were crossed, it became inevitably narrower. You can also see the presence of stairs and paths fully made-up of rocks, mainly in the zones in which rains were really common and frequent, this was made to avoid accidents.
While on the dry and sandy zones the road was mostly dirt since this did not cause any inconvenience in its journey. Another very important point is the way in which the Qhapaq Ñan created large walls when they reached their villages, since this prevented animals and people from entering the farms to consume the food that was grown there.
Outside the Qhapaq Ñan path, the architecture and technology used in different buildings linked to this path were also very important.
Coming from the Quechua word “Tanpu” which means temporary accommodation, these buildings were administrative and military centres located along the Qhapaq Ñan. They were about 20 km apart and their main function was to give the walkers a place to rest. The nearest local authorities were responsible for keeping provisions in their “Colcas”, which were warehouses or storerooms. Colcas can even be found in the Lluta Valley, a few minutes from the city of Arica.
Another construction present next to the Qhapaq Ñan were the Kallankas, which were huge buildings, since their main function was to be a public place for social gatherings, storage for Inca soldiers or housing for important people, a lot of space was needed.
These were funerary towers, usually with a round base, originally built for high-ranking people in the Aymara and Inca cultures. Many examples can still be found in the town of Zapahuira in northern Chile.